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Activity Design Goal: work from problems and opportunities of problem domain to envision new activities.

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Presentation on theme: "Activity Design Goal: work from problems and opportunities of problem domain to envision new activities."— Presentation transcript:

1 Activity Design Goal: work from problems and opportunities of problem domain to envision new activities

2 An HCIC Example Goal: design a universal remote control Measure use of remote controls and functionalities Mathematically determine which remote and which function might be next Automatically perform it with a touch of a button

3 From Requirements to Design Requirements analysis sets the scene Design transforms people’s activities –New technology, new tasks, new experiences –And the cycle continues...


5 product data browsing searching ordering payment customer data SYSTEM FUNCTIONALITY USER INTERFACE icons links menus layout navigation labels fields security feedback The Two Faces of HCI Design

6 Activity Design Emphasizes broad scope of what is being designed Establishes and maintains usage context Also referred to as conceptual design or task-level design

7 Why System Functionality First? Designers can focus on what a system will do Postpone the “how” question until later Hard to analyze UI needs without knowing what a system will do UI difficulties can destroy a system’s usability

8 Envisioning New Activities Three activity design concerns to keep in mind: Effectiveness: Designing tasks that meet real needs Comprehension: Designing concepts and services that your users can predict, understand Satisfaction: Designing tasks that are motivating and lead to feelings of accomplishment, satisfaction

9 Designing for Effectiveness Innovation is good, but how much is too much? –Build on what is already working well –Engage stakeholders in cooperative design What parts of a task to support via technology? –Leverage other aspects of the work context, both people and things (distributed cognition) Balance tendency toward general solutions with the needs of specific tasks –Predict and support exceptions, provide special cases for common or critical tasks

10 Designing for Comprehension Cannot directly observe comprehension –Must rely on users’ behaviors, reactions, comments –Make inferences about their mental models Metaphors play a crucial role in this –Designers explore metaphors to get new ideas –Users evoke metaphors to understand new concepts Try to leverage users’ existing knowledge –Anticipate and support analogical reasoning –But look for ways to “break” current understandings

11 Designer’s Model User’s Mental Model Cashier Systematic, logical, comprehensive Ad hoc, informal, incomplete The Web Cart

12 Designing for Satisfaction Automate tedious tasks, but try not to remove sources of reward or accomplishment –Carefully examine sources of reward, maintain or enhance opportunities for feelings of achievement –Use the computer to make tasks more personal, more stimulating, more “fun” Balance the needs of individuals with those of the groups they work with –The people who do the most “work” when using a system may not be those who get the most “benefit”

13 Problem scenarios: work from current practice to build new Activity design scenarios: transform current activities to use new design ideas Claims analysis: identify, illustrate, and document design features with key implications Activity design space: brainstorm implications of metaphors and technology Problem claims: look for design ideas that address negatives, but keep positives HCI knowledge about activity design SBD and Activity Design

14 Exploring Metaphors and Technology Metaphors for online shopping... Technology for online shopping...

15 Apply a Computational Metaphor Taking a software object’s point of view –Use anthropomorphism to extend the task Envision “scenario within a scenario” –Ask: what would I do, if I were a shopping list trying to be helpful to this shopper? May discover new services, other objects –But need to reflect on implications of each idea –Claims analysis helps you do this

16 Working With Claims in Design Maintain or enhance as many positive impacts (upsides) as you can While removing or minimizing negative impacts (downsides) whenever possible As new ideas/scenarios are envisioned, consider also the new claims that they raise

17 From the Science Fair Case Study Giving all students the same physical display board... + constrains and simplifies project lay-out + limits visual complexity for viewers - but exhibits may have widely varying needs - but regularity and simplicity may be boring to view How to maintain or enhance the benefits for planning and viewing but address the project- specific needs, or issues of variety and creativity in display?

18 New Activities Lead to New Claims We envisioned an exhibit template that would help in planning, but made it editable so that motivated (e.g. experienced) students could be as creative as desired Providing an exhibit template that is editable... + offers default planning and lay-out of exhibit parts + leverages students’ familiarity with science projects + enables expert participants to be creative - but students may trust the template too much - but inexperienced students may become confused

19 Photo taken from a garden shop problem scenario: shopper wanders by, sees the pots, is reminded of needs

20 From a Garden Shop Scenario... A wall of shelves for displaying products... + simplifies comparison of physical features + provides implicit availability/popularity indications + directs shoppers to related products - but some shelves will be difficult to reach - but browsing is constrained by physical layout How to maintain or enhance product comparisons and other analysis tasks, while addressing awkwardness and physical constraints?

21 Refining an Activity Design Ongoing claims analysis of activity scenarios –Capture key ideas, begin to build design rationale –Document problems to address during UI design Participatory design –Brainstorming sessions with stakeholders –Share rough ideas, get them to elaborate (metaphors can be very useful here as well) Consistency and coherence –Reuse actors and objects to increase coherence –Complement with ongoing “what if?” reasoning to expand and test the overall design

22 Friday Activity: Participatory Design Consider the role that your client seems to be taking in your project How can you maintain control over your project How can you encourage your client to participate in helpful ways

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